A landlord in a buy to let market often comes under stress when the tenants selected go wrong or belies expectations. For landlords there are only two options- find a great tenant else waste a lot of time solving the problems created by the bad renter.
So finding a quality tenant is very important and it just does not happen by the stroke of luck. It needs some hard work by the landlord or the agents he has deputed by spending time to zero in on a tenant who has credentials that really matches the parameters for renting that property.
This has to be done correctly by first of all spending a lot of time on the property itself before welcoming the tenant after signing a tenancy contract.
Finding a tenant starts with putting up an advertisement that is appealing to the right people by clearly specifying the kind of tenant you are looking for. For this list out all the main attributes in the Ad so that the target audience will find it desirable.
Two issues are important- smoking and pets. Give factual information about the neighborhood so that a college student will not land up in the colony where homeowners are in a majority. Clear information will definitely get you a responsible professional with family. Also choose the medium of your Ad intelligently. College students use Facebook and Craigslist and are unlikely to visit the classified section of a newspaper as family men generally do.
How to Apply?
To make the application process more professional keep an application format with the Ad which can be sent back as an e-mail or doc attachment.
Shortlist a few applicants and do a telephonic interview to know whether in-person walk-through is really warranted.
This helps to weed out unworthy applicants.
- On the phone ask questions and specify an application fee will be required
- If the prospect wants to apply after the phone interview, let him bring the fee to the walk-through.
- Print the application and get it signed at that point.
Phone interview gives a general feel about the prospect. So freely ask open-ended questions and notice awkward silences. People get uncomfortable when forced to say things they don’t mean to.
Check the references given. Call up the current landlord and the previous. Also talk to the prospect’s supervisors of the past and present.
Some of the questions for them can be:
- How long have you known the renter?
- What all processes did you go through while evaluating the renter?
- Ask the supervisor how long the prospect has worked with him at the company?
- What he is doing and the supervisor’s impression of them.
Walk Through Questions
Prepare a few red-flag questions to ask at the walk-through. You can mention something that a reference had said about him and look for the prospect’s reaction. Tensing up and struggling for a convincing answer indicates a problem in hand. On the other hand, if the answers are logical, the tenant may be genuine.
At the walk-through, you must take questions from the prospect. If he asks questions about the house and community rules, it shows he is responsible. If he is focusing on cost it could reveal that he is worried about covering all the expenses.
Once you feel comfortable after the walk-through, ask the prospect submit an application and a fee for the background check. Also drive by the applicant’s current address and gather idea on how they treat that place. If you have some concerns, bring it up while the applicant signs the lease.
Finally, if you are harbouring any sort of frustration point it out or the applicant is not getting you the paperwork in a timely manner, just walk away. The fact is-frustrations never vanish once a tenant is admitted. It will only grow and get worse.
This is the crucial point and is a make or break situation. Make up your mind whether you want the applicant as your tenant or not.
- Fix the meeting to sign the lease.
- Demand the prospect to keep ready security deposit and first payment for signing.
- Scan the lease document thoroughly with the tenant(s) before signing it.
Properly highlight the missed payment and eviction sections in the agreement. Also include the late payment fee clause in the agreement. State that if a payment is not received within five days or within the specified time period eviction will be effected. Watch for the reaction from applicants during this section.
If you see they have a concern, just ask, “Any problem?” Do remember that you can still back out and you have not signed yet. If the tenant is cool go ahead and sign the deed.
In the agreement clearly specify the lines of communication such as e-mail, phone, sms etc in matters like payment, repairs and other emergencies.
After signing, give the tenant a walk-through checklist. This will set right the concerns of the tenant relating to any damage already done to the property. Ask to return the list in three days time. By this time, you will have a decent tenant in hand who will treat your property with respect.
These are the main points to be borne in mind if you are seeking accommodation Knightsbridge area in Central London where good connectivity to all parts of London is a plus. Dotted with many shopping avenues, good accommodation and peaceful environment Knightsbridge is a renter’s delight.
The studio flats in Knightsbridge are ideally suited for business class looking for short term accommodation. The area is really posh and the studio flats are quite sophisticated.
For flats to rent in Knightsbridge do take the help of a professional letting agency. They will successfully guide you to the procedures required in finding an affordable accommodation suited to your budget.